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Old 09-18-2003, 11:00 PM   #76
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See this the essence of the problem - some people see drug use as a crime (Headache) while others see drug use as a medical problem, I am for the latter. Most people do drugs in the beginning for kicks but eventually they become addicted and use it as a crutch for the problems in their life. Yes they are doing something bad that is killing them but to arrest them as criminals to me is wrong because 1) they are not gonna quit by going to jail and 2) being arrested and going to jail will limit their future job prospectives, which in a sense could lead them to be more unhappy and therefore back to drug usage. Of course they should have known that before they smoked their first joint but how many of us who have smoked up ever thought of it ruining our lives ? - you just don't think that and no amount of 'just say no' commercials will change that. I just don't understand why people who use prescription drugs like oxycontin or percocet or drugs like valium for anxiety and become addicted to those are in society are not looked down upon as much as someone on crack or heroin. I have done my share of drugs and lines of coke are no different than something like Xanax or valium. Both are addictive but one is looked down upon in society and those people are told to go to jail. If drugs like cocaine, heroin were legalized (not what i advocate) then those drugs would lose some of their myth in society. When people use words like junky, druggy and then mix that with severe penalties for use of those drugs then you end up creating a very bad portal for unhappy people to use that portal when they feel they have no hope or no other way to go. I know people who started doing coke who never smoked a joint in high school they became unhappy for whatever reasons and they look at the 'druggy' lifestyle and for whatever reason they jump into that lifestyle. To me it's a medical problem that needs to be addressed by all parts of society i.e., government, citizens. If we all see it is as a medical problem then instead of punishing them which leads them into an even worse situation, we can help them and find dignified solutions to their problems. That to me is what is a government and a societies obligations to it's citizens.
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Old 09-19-2003, 12:04 AM   #77
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If you want to look for criminals... just look at our governments. The main reason heroine and other hard drugs will not go away is that there is an international struggle by government agencies to control the opiate production for their own profits. Sorry to say, but the CIA controls a lot of the international black-market on drugs to finance their black-budgets. It is one of many reasons the U.S. is keen to be in Afghanistan right now, and like another poster pointed out, will not destroy their poppy fields.

As for opiate usage in and of itself has been and continues to be used safely medically and recreationally all over the world for thousands of years. Morphine especially was popular in high-society around the world including the United States (Jefferson was particular fond). Then heroine was invented by a Bayor pharmaceuticals scientist by taking morphine and boiling it with acetic acid. It was heavily marketed as a cure-all wonderdrug and became the best-selling drug of all time. Since it has increased lipid solubility it passes the blood-brain barrier more quickly. It is three times more potent than morphine. You could even pick up some heroine at your local drug store. Bayor has since written it out of their official company history and by WW I had concentrated on their other "miracle" drug aspirin.

As an interesting side note, "junkie" is a term not originally used by heroine addicts but by morphine users who would support their use by collecting junk and scrap metal.
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Old 09-19-2003, 03:59 AM   #78
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Originally posted by MrBrau1
So the addict has no responsibility in this? They're just helpless people, using drugs to escape abusive parents, or the misery of their unrealized dreams? If they really have no choice in the matter there is NOTHING you can do to help them. Outcome is predetermined.
Mr. Brau1,

No.

I did not say that the addict has no responsibilty. Like Headache says, the user is indeed the one who chooses to put the needle in their arm. With this I agree.

What I did say was that the social context ought to ellicit a more compassionate response. It ought to have an impact on how we punish users and how we treat addicts.

In my mind, 10 years of addiction and the recovery process is punishment enough. I don't understand how jail resolves the issues that led to drug addiction. And is that not the ultimate goal?
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Old 09-19-2003, 04:04 AM   #79
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Originally posted by nbcrusader


The proposals above are ways to internalize the externalities of drug use.
I don't understand.
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Old 09-19-2003, 04:37 AM   #80
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Originally posted by Headache in a Suitcase
[B]thank you MrBrau. last i checked, drug use IS a crime. people who use hardship in their life as an excuse to use drugs... well... it's nothing more than an excuse. there are many homeless out there who do not do drugs. there are many who have come from places of abuse who do not do drugs. there are many who are children of abusers who do not use drugs. the majority of the people in the united states and canada do not use drugs.
Yes it is a crime. But I don't think it warrants a response like murder as you suggest in another post. It's a bad analogy. I don't think I ever suggested that drug use excusable, only understandable. Those are two different things. If someone lives in poverty (something that I am implicated in) and they turn to drug use, I can understand this. If I were in that situation, I cannot honestly that wouldn't do the same. I think we are all capable of it.

Quote:
i don't connect poverty to drug use, because there is no connection. it is a poor excuse. drug users come from all ranges of wealth, from the quote-unquote "top 1%" right down to those below the poverty line. in many cases, junkies who are homeless often got that way because they were junkies. if drug use is the result of systematic poverty, as you put it, then how do you explain the numerous celebrities and athletes with drug problems? what is their issue?
I am from Toronto, so this is where my experience comes from. The 2001 study on drug use in Toronto shows that a disproportionate amount of street youth use heroin, crack/cocaine and marijuana compared with the adult and student population.

See for yourself: http://www.city.toronto.on.ca/drugce...u01/rgdu01.htm

There have been many reports that alcoholism and drug use is rampant among impoverished Native American communities.

Can you please tell me why street youth and Native Americans are more likely to have an addiction problem than your average person. If it is not poverty and hardship, what is it? I don't see it.

I haven't said nor meant to imply that all drug use is a result of poverty. I am focusing on it because it hasn't been addressed here and I think it is extremely important to take into account.

So as for the problems with athletes and stars, there exist other reasons. I read a bit about theory about "dislocation". Does anyone else no more about this?

However, I don't think Robert Downey jr. is a good example of you average drug user.

Quote:
You seem obsessed with narrowing the focus of drug abuse to just the impoverished and the "shunned." But the pandemic of drug use is a problem that crosses all barriers as far as wealth, race, gender, religion and sexual preference. We've seen with AIDS/HIV that narrowing the focus to one select group can be very dangerous and doesn't tackle the entire problem.
This is an extremely inappropriate and ill chosen comparison. Focusing on AIDS as a homosexual disease was a result of fear and prejudice. How on earth is this the same thing?

Quote:
I understand that it's an addiction, but it is most deffinetly also a crime. So while I support giving drug addicts some sort of way to kick their habbit, but there has to be some sort of punishment, wether it be for the homeless or the extremely wealthy.
Like I have said, the price someone pays for the addiction is enough for me.

We'll just have to agree to disagree on that one.

Quote:
I go back to my main point. Who puts the first needle to vein? Who snorts the first line of blow? Who smokes the first doobie? It may be an addiction after you start, but it's a personal decision the first time. Every person has free will. And every person, no matter what wealth class they might be in, can decide NOT to take drugs.
Should the addiction be acknowledged? Or is is it only the first choice that matters? It's not clear in my mind.

I still think it is naive to say any person can say no to drugs despite there wealth class. This is the point exactly. Your wealth class partly determines how you would respond. Because of my wealth class, I am less likely to choose drugs. I don't face the prejudice and choices of a native american or the child of a welfare mom. This has to be acknowledged I think.
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